Yoga is probably one of the most beneficial exercise regimes there are. There are just so many benefits to practicing yoga. And the beautiful thing about yoga is that there are several poses that you can adapt to fit your needs. There are yoga poses that are mainly for stress relief, and there are those that are for improving your immune system. And of course, the reason for this article: there are many yoga poses that can help ease menstrual pains.
Beginner yoga practitioners would benefit immensely from these yoga poses. In addition, the poses can be modified to raise the difficulty level for advanced practitioners.
Here are 5 of these poses to help with those menstrual cramps
1. Camel Pose (Ustrasana)
The camel pose is effective for relieving menstrual cramps. Some of its benefits are that the pose helps you to do a lot of stretching to your body.
It stretches your ankles, groin, thighs, your deep hip flexors, and the front of your body. And through the stretching of your abdominal region, it reduces the contractions, which in turn reduce your cramps.
In addition to the stretching, it also clears up your abdomen, throat, and chest and strengthens the muscles in your back. The icing on the cake of its benefits is that it improves your posture.
How To Do the Camel Pose
- Go down on both knees. Let the gap between your knees be about the width of your hips.
- Turn your thighs inward, but not all the way.
- Let your shins and the top of your feet press flat to the ground. Try to relax your buttocks.
- Rest your hands on the upside of your glutes with your fingers pointing downwards.
- Lean back and with your chest lifted and your shoulders relaxed.
- You can drop your hands to touch your heels if you want to increase the difficulty level a little.
The camel pose not only helps with your menstrual pain, but it also helps to ease fatigue, mild back pain, and anxiety.
2. Child’s Pose (Balsana)
Balsana is a simple yoga pose that works effectively to reduce menstrual pain. It is not a tough pose and beginners should be able to do it with ease. The child’s pose acts directly on the menstrual pain in your back.
How To Do the Child’s Pose
- Kneel on the floor with the toes of each foot close together.
- Widen your knees till the gap is about the width of your hips.
- Rest your hands palms-down on your thighs.
- As you exhale, bring your upper body down between your knees till your forehead touches the floor.
- Stretch your hands beyond your head and relax your shoulders.
- Remain in the position for a few minutes.
The child’s pose helps you to align your back and relieves any mild back pain. In addition to relieving menstrual pain, the pose also helps to relax your mind.
3. Head to Knee Forward Bend (Janu Sirsasana)
Forward bends are usually great for relieving pains, and the head to knee forward bend is known to be particularly helpful with menstrual pains. Forward bends target your reproductive and abdominal muscles.
This position gives a lot of room for modification so that beginners and advanced yoga practitioners can adapt it to suit their needs.
How To Do the Head To Knee Forward Bend
- Sit and stretch your legs in front of you.
- Bend your right leg so that your right foot presses against your inner left thigh. Keep both legs relaxed.
- Bend your torso over your left leg and grab your left foot.
- Lengthen your back as best as you can.
- Make sure to position your torso so that it is facing your left leg.
- Breathe slowly as you remain in this position for up to three minutes before you switch sides.
The head to knee forward bend helps to enhance your digestive and reproductive systems, ease menstrual cramps, anxiety, and fatigue. This pose also helps you get past mild depression.
4. Reclining Twist Pose (Bharadvaja)
Reclining twist pose is one of the most popular for easing menstrual pain. And its popularity is not surprising, as the pose has a lot of benefits. Easing menstrual pain is just one of them.
It gives your hips and back a proper stretch, relieving aches from your period. The pose also encourages the proper flow of blood to your digestive organs, helping to stimulate them and keep them active.
How To Do the Reclining Twist
- Lie on your back.
- Bend your knees so that your feet are flat on the ground.
- As you exhale, raise the knees towards your chest and hold them there with your hands around them.
- Return your left leg so it is flat on the floor, but keep your right leg in its position.
- Stretch your right arm sideways with your palm facing down.
- Use your left hand to guide your right knee so it rests on the left side of your body. Your left hand should remain on your right knee.
- Let your right knee go as far down as it can go.
- Turn your head to the right so you are looking at your right fingertips. Relax your body.
- Hold this position for a few minutes and switch sides.
5. Corpse Pose (Savasana)
This is usually the last pose in a yoga workout session, probably because it is the easiest. Although this pose does not stretch any muscles as the others do, it works on your mind. It helps to take the focus of your mind off your menstrual pain and regulates your breathing.
- How To Do The Corpse Pose
- Lie on your back. Relax your body and breathe steadily. Clear your mind and feel your body go light.
All these poses have been found to help ease the pain. Make sure you do all those poses on a proper yoga mat so that you don’t bruise your knees on the cold, hard ground.
If you still don’t feel better after these poses, contact your doctor.
*This article was written in partnership with Brain Fall.